Friday, April 12, 2013

Today: past tense.

*  I woke up and called in to work with a feeling that things just weren't right; more premonition than solid facts.
*  I drove to school at 6:45am in my pjs to set up for a substitute.
*  I was a slower moving beast than normal and took nearly 45 minutes to do a 20 minute job.
*  I decided to screw embarrassment, and waved to my students as they came into school.  No makeup, all sweatpants, hair not brushed.  I heard them whisper to another teacher that, "Man... Ms. Meyers doesn't look good at all."
*  I ate bread pudding for breakfast because it sounded oh so much better than yogurt. And I'm an adult.  Adults can do all kinds of ridiculous things.  Because being an adult is awesome.
*  I watched the single most disturbing documentary I have ever seen, gritting my teeth through alieve and a wine bottle cooler-turned-cold compress on my growing headache.  I should have known better.  But I watched.  And I was so horrified by a certain 3 minute segment - despite the strong warnings that should have told my gut to turn it off... because HBO never and I mean NEVER interrupts programming to give a warning mid-way through.  I was so horrified that I found myself crying loud, obnoxious tears, pressing my hands to my ears, literally blocking out all sound, and repeating the word "no" with a desperation that I have never heard come from my own voice.  There are some things you can never unsee.  Or unhear.  The unhearing is worse.
*  I survived my growing headache turning into one of epic proportions.  Leaving me drained, nauseous, feverish, and shaking.  The worst kind of sick.  The kind you know you worsened.  The hold yourself up with the bathroom walls and pray your legs don't give out from under you, two showers and two fresh sets of clothes within an hour kind of sick.
*  I took a nap with not one, but two kittens.  And it was awesome.  It was just barely noon.  Stillness, darkness, heavy medication, cold compresses (real or stupidly repurposed), and kittens help most modern illnesses.
*  I did not receive a call from the boy who promised to call.  I wallowed for about 37 seconds before deciding old fashioned boy-girl protocol is for the birds.  I called him myself with suggested plans.  Success was mine.
*  I ate picnic lunch on a blanket on the living room floor for dinner.  It was amazing.
*  I watched Project Runway and Ellen stand up specials and laughed so hard my headache came back.
*  I discovered that Deadliest Catch is coming back in a week and I just can't help feeling that irrepressible anticipation growing in my chest.  You know, because I'm such a rough and tough, die hard, fisherman-lady-person.  I effing love that show.
*  I did not grade the small mountain of papers I brought home from school this morning.
*  I did not paint my nails, nor do the dishes as I'd planned.
*  I did not cure my headache, nor my stomachache.
*  I ended my day feeling lucky to be alive, to have good food to eat, good blogs and books to read, persnickety kittens to cuddle, friends to call and text and email and facebook, to have good health most of the time, to have students who tell the truth - especially when it's ugly, and to have parents who care enough to call three times when they've realized I'm home sick while they are out of town.

Tomorrow will be kinder.  Tomorrow will be more consistent.  Tomorrow will be.

Thursday, April 11, 2013


This song on my mind.  In heavy rotation.  On repeat.  Like a mantra, or a prayer.  

I have never, and I mean ever, been accused of holding back.  Of not speaking my mind.  Forever the squeeky wheel, I am an emotional reactor.  I explode with all makes of emotion first, but can then move on with my life.

It ends up, in my mind anyway, as my particular brand of passion.  My zeal.  I will absolutely give life my all; kick ass and take names while I'm at it - whether that means picking up and moving, travelling alone, or just devoting an obscene amount of time on the couch in a weekend of television lust.  The emotional reaction drives the passion and drives the decision.  But sometimes that passion, that decisiveness, can be super scary.

Losing to the risks, having my heart broken to shreds, and watching decisions not pan out the way I would have hoped has made me hold back on the most important of things.  Not my job, my weekend plans or my thoughts on the tough topics of the day.  The really important stuff.  The things I hold most dear: my friendships and relationship.  Holding back has been the crutch to hold onto some semblance of control when things were feeling anything but calm.

My closest friends are simultaneously going through the most joyous and devastating moments I can imagine.  It is incredibly difficult to react appropriately.  I don't have any kind of compass for these moments and the complexities of my friends as they stress and jump for joy and cry and turn nasty and generally surprise me at every moment.  My reactions have not necessarily been helpful or awesome.   My attempts to control my face to not betray my thoughts after being oh so surprised my my lovelies' craziness.   My face betrays me, my reactions isolate... and why?  Because I'm trying to hold onto something?  By trying to be there for them, yet somehow getting what I need from them?  It's a logic that simply doesn't make sense.

I've jumped into jobs, into completely different cultures.  I've moved across the country and the world.   And I've never regretted it.  It's almost like a switch.  Somewhere inside, without much conscious thought, the decision is made almost without my realizing it.  That decisiveness has been a huge blessing - and after kind of losing my mojo for a few years after a few too many moments of second guessing, I cannot express how amazing it feels to feel that decisiveness come creeping back.  A few nights ago, I felt it again.  Like a snap from deep within.  A decision.

No thoughts.  No emotional tantrums or reactions.  Just let go.  Take the plunge and see where things go.  Pry open the creaky door to the dusty space in my heart and dance with the thoughts playing in my mind.  Back up and give space where space is due.  It is an instantaneous relief.  Like a weight has lifted off of my shoulders and I can stand tall again.

It's just a start.  The teensiest space; the smallest of openings. It is truly terrifying and makes me feel so incredibly vulnerable.  But my gut is with me.  I feel strong and powerful and sexy as hell.

Sunday, April 7, 2013

Quote of the Week

"She knew, of course, that there was something about her that was different. But it was more like a friendly spirit than like anything that was a part of herself. She brought everything to it, and it answered her; happiness consisted of that backward and forward movement of herself. The something came and went, she never knew how. Sometimes she hunted for it and could not find it; again, she lifted her eyes from a book, or stepped out-of-doors, or wakened in the morning, and it was there-under her cheek, it usually seemed to be, or over her breast-a kind of warm sureness. And when it was there, everything was more interesting and beautiful, even people."     
-Willa Cather (Song of the Lark)

Friday, April 5, 2013

How'd that Happen?

In the grand list of things I'm not awesome at, taking time to do what makes me happy and makes me feel fulfilled is right up there.  There's not a good reason for it.  But it's a thing.  I get busy, take on additional duties in mind and body and one way or another, the things that make me really really happy end up getting pushed back.  

It's kind of like getting my hair done.  I can afford it.  I have the time.  I have a stylist I trust with my head, which, let's be honest, is kind of a big deal.  I go in, get things taken care of and walk out of the salon feeling like a million bucks.  Yet I put it off.  I went in today and realized it had been over 3 months since my last visit.  And that's just silly.    

I'd like to get better at prioritizing my... you know, priorities.  Things that make me feel happy and fulfilled.   I recently read something that said the places, people, and things we love and place the highest value on are what we devote our time and energy to.  

So I hereby dedicate April, 2013 to prioritizing and devoting time for things, people and activities that make me happy.  It's the perfect time for after-dinner walks, spending quality time with friends and family, and making plans for adventures big and small.  Oh yes, and eating more fruit.  Because a bit of practicality couldn't hurt.  
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